WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) issued the following statement in the wake of the Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson that overturns the precedents of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. Senator Cardin is an original cosponsor of the Women’s Health Protection Act (S. 1975) that would codify the right to choose in federal law.
“The Supreme Court of the United States is supposed to be the last line of defense, protecting the rights of Americans and guaranteeing equal justice under the law for all. The highest court in the land, defenders of the Constitution, should never be the one deliberately taking away the rights of millions of people, knowing the dire consequences of putting them in the hands of state legislatures. Sadly, this is exactly what has happened this morning. Individuals in more than half the states now are in jeopardy, including 13 states with trigger laws that almost immediately end access to safe, legal abortions. Abortion is a standard part of health care. Bans, criminalization and bounty hunter laws, especially without exceptions even for rape and incest or the life of the mother, will not stop abortions. Abortions will continue in states like Maryland that respect individual privacy rights. Marylanders have already shown willingness to step up and provide access to care for those who cannot access it in their own state, but our medical systems will feel the weight of 26 states with contrary laws. Low-income families and those without the means to leave their homes and travel to other states, particularly including women of color, will be the most burdened.
“Senate Republicans bear responsibility for confirming justices they knew full-well intended to overturn Roe v. Wade, putting the lives of millions of women and girls in such a place where their own government does not trust them to make decisions about their own body and their own future.
“History will show this as one of the worst decisions of the Supreme Court. Congress, the Biden administration and state governments must take action to protect the reproductive and health rights of Americans. There should be a common standard protecting the right of self-determination of health decisions for women and individuals, regardless of what state you live in today.”